I think our Senators and Representatives are becoming aware that the protests are balancing on the knife’s edge between the Boston Tea Party and The October March to Versailles. And we don’t have either Hamilton *or* Jefferson. The country might fall to the fishwives.
Guys, when I said that most revolutions fail because they throw the baby out with the bath water, I was thinking specifically of the contrast between the American and French revolutions. Compare and contrast John Adams’ defense of the soldiers responsible for the Boston Massacre and Robespierre’s Reign of Terror.
At this point I have no doubt we’re seeing the end of the GOP. Unfortunately, I think that if we’re not careful, we’ll see the end of the Democrats as well, and the Constitution.
It’s easy for violence and retribution to become when we’re afraid, but we have to keep the long game in mind. What’s good for us, our family, our community, our country, all humankind, the planet, and the Universe. Nested one within another, none is more important than any of the others, and thus pieces of intersectionality begin to be formed.
Don’t become what you hate and fear and despise. Rise up, and think about building a future for *all* of us, with rule of law, and justice meted out equality to rich and poor, from many, one. Rise up, and teach your children to be kind and generous as well as smart and practical. Rise up, and use your gifts in the service of your family, your community, and your world.
Rise up, and embrace a radical view of the world where every human being is interconnected and interdependent, and where compassion rules. Rise up and learn together, explore together, defend the weak and the poor together. Rise up you superhero teachers and doctors and plumbers and farmers who keep the gears of the world oiled and moving.
The forces of evil are loud and boisterous, painting bullying as strength instead of weakness, and painting contempt of the vulnerable as righteous instead of heinous. They will try to fool us with “just this once”, “if they can do it, why can’t I”, and other lies we want to tell ourselves when fear stalks our resolve.
We will win. At the cost of many of us, those whose lives will be shortened when the ACA, and Medicaid, and Medicare and Social Security are taken away. At the cost of people who pray “Allahu akbar” instead of “God is great” and were sent into war and famine and genocide because of it.
At the cost of people who have paid into our system for 5, 10 20 years, planting and harvesting our crops, slaughtering our chickens and hogs, washing our dishes, cleaning our hotel rooms, building our roofs, all for below minimum wage, all with forged or non-existent papers that allow them to form a tenuous hold on a land they now call home.
At the cost of women whose dreams, goals, and even lives are gone with unsafe pregnancies and domestic violence the norm. At the cost of poisoning the children of Flint (the children of Omelas) and all of those along the Missouri river for a pipeline that is neither wanted nor needed except by its investors.
Are you mad? You should be. Take that anger, and shape and channel it into a resistance that thinks beyond ending the pain and toward nurturing and building a better nation that won’t have the same loopholes and mistakes built in, one in which no one is ever, for any reasons, only 3/5 of a person. See you in the resistance.
Make phone calls, write letters, sign petitions. Vote, vote, vote. Sign others up to vote. Protest. Make pink hats and wear them everywhere. Pin safety pins on and argue as to why they’re not useful. Send money to the lawyers and the bureaucrats. Reach out to your neighbors, even the Tories. Even the Confederates. Even (as our German friends learned over seventy years ago) the Nazis.
But hold them to *your* standards. “You are wholly a part of our republic, and you must act like it.” We have a rule of law, and you must respect it.” “We have a more of seeking justice through restoration instead of retribution, and we expect you to learn it and earn it.”
Our strengths are our diversity, our kindness, our passion, our righteous anger curbed by compassion and an understanding of “there but for circumstance go I”. We set boundaries, and we hold to them. We hold to them calmly, and equally whether the one pushing them is rich, poor, white, brown, red, yellow, male, female, agender, gay, straight, bisexual, old, young, able-bodied, or disabled — the wergelt is equal for all.
Rise up, and be the parents of a nation sadder, stronger, and wiser, instead of a nation torn and bleeding and sold to the highest bidder. That’s what we need for you, whether you are progressive or conservative. Rise up to defend the constitution and the rule of law, and to stop the creeping shadow overcoming our land.
(I am not throwing away my shot)
With credit and thanks to Lin-Manuel Miranda for the fabulous refrain that played through my head as I wrote this: